Transition into Summer Countdown!

One week down, one more to go between school and camp. On one hand getting a lot of things done, swimming lessons and dentist checkups. On the other hand, figuring out what do to besides watching devices. At least once a day there has to be somewhere to go, and it is really exhausting for me. I am so grateful for school and camp that keep our kids happy, busy, and thriving.

Shabbat especially is so beautiful, but sometimes not so peaceful as the kids figure out how to entertain themselves once we get home from synagogue. Sometimes I enjoy taking them to a park or to friends, but today I just wanted to take a nap.

I am always inspired by the lesson of the week, and all the different perspectives.

Enjoy a few below,

Coach Yulia

“The staff of Aaron…blossomed and its almonds ripened” (Numbers 17:23). King David teaches us that a “good person will blossom like a palm tree”. One of the reasons a good person is compared specifically to a palm tree is that it is the only tree that will produce fruit in a desert. Its roots are so deep that it can draw water from deep under the ground. So too, a truly good person is able to do what is right, not because it‘s the norm in the society in which he happens to live in, but because it is what’s right. In every circumstance and situation, he will draw from his deep roots; he will blossom by bringing spiritual beauty to the world, and produce fruits by bringing physical blessings. This is really what the Jewish people are all about: our roots are so deep, reaching all the way back to Abraham and Sarah, that wherever we have gone in over 2000 years of exile, we have managed to bring both spiritual and physical blessings to every country we have lived in. (Based on the teaching of Rabbi Aaron Soloveitchik.)
Hirshy Minkowicz

It is not something they taught us in Rabbinical school, yet it has saved me on many occasions including twice this week alone.

The science of how it works is fairly simple. One battery can charge another and jump start a vehicle that hasn’t been able to get fired up. All it takes is a good cable connection between the two.

What made this week’s jump start episodes special was the timely and personal inspiration they provided.

My Sunday morning this week included driving with a friend to pick up a car that was generously being donated to our center. The donor informed us before we headed out that the car was in excellent condition inside and out, yet would need a boost to start it up due to not being used for a long time so we took along our jumper cables and headed to her house.

We arrived, hooked up the cables, turned the key and waited for the magic. There was nothing. Try as we may we could not get the car to start. After several attempts, I finally suggested that perhaps our cables weren’t the proper grade for the donated car.

We asked the donor if we could borrow her cables and after a quick hookup, under rabbinical supervision, we turned the key and didn’t have to wait long for the magic. In a matter of seconds we were up and running and the car was ready to hit the road.

In the evening of the next day, I loaded my family into our 12-passenger van to head down to my daughters graduation, yet when I tried the ignition it would not start. I quickly called a friend and asked him to come with his car so we could jump start the van. We hooked up the cables, turned the key and waited for the magic yet there was none. Kaput. We tried another set of cables and still the same result. Nada.

My friend suggested we try a slick new jumpstarting gadget he recently purchased. This was a small portable yet very strong battery, which could fit in the palm of my hand and it had two tiny jumper cables attached to it. I told him that I didn’t think the small battery or cables would be any match for my big huge van. He suggested we try anyway.

We hooked up the cables, turned the key, and did not have to wait for the magic. Viola! the van fired up and we were on our way.

Then I realized that this science has been around for thousands of years, long before the invention of any batteries or motor vehicles and it was a highlight of the teachings of the Rebbe whose Yahrtzeit is this Shabbat.

It is something they taught us in Rabbinical school, and it saves thousands of souls every week.

The science of how it works is fairly simple. One soul can charge another and jump start a journey that hasn’t been able to get fired up. All it takes is a good cable connection between the two. If at first it doesn’t work it’s not the soul but the quality of the connection. For even a small and young soul, that can fit in the palm of one’s hand, can provide a boost to a seasoned and grown soul.

Afshine Emrani
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